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  • Green Foods That Pack a Nutritional Punch


    Elisa - Jenny Craig

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      Green Foods That Pack a Nutritional Punch

      Green veggies – most of us were not fans of them as kids, but as adults, we know how important it is to eat them daily. We know they’re good for us, but it’s tough to keep track of why and which ones are the best. So we pulled 10 different items out of the crisper—all of which are on our Fresh and Free Additions list—to look at why each should make it onto our plates regularly.

       

      Many green vegetables are low in calories and have similar nutritional profiles, but there are some differences, depending on your goals. Fiber is important since it can aid in weight loss by helping you feel full and keeping your digestive system regular. One of these veggies is best for curbing your appetite. Others will help keep you hydrated. Choose what sounds good to you and get creative when combining different flavors and benefits!

       

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      Broccoli

      A cup of this cruciferous veggie has more vitamin C than a medium-sized orange. The antioxidant could protect you against cancer, heart disease and other ailments, but vitamin C is best known for its role in the body’s healing process. Broccoli has more nutritional force when it’s raw, but it’s also great when it’s steamed with broth or roasted and served with a squeeze of lemon.

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      Brussels Sprouts

      These mini-cabbages may help maintain healthy blood sugar levels, and many studies1 link them with a decreased risk of diabetes. Traditionally cut and cooked, Brussels sprouts can also be shredded or chopped and added raw to a salad.

       

      Sources:

      1 https://diabetesmealplans.com/10446/brussels-sprouts-and-type-2-diabetes/

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      Cabbage

      This all-star leafy green that’s just as tasty cooked as raw is particularly good for your brain, blood and bones. Its high level of vitamin K can increase mental functions2, is essential for blood clotting and also helps in the transport of calcium, which cabbage also boasts.

       

      Sources:

      2 https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4555145/ 

       

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      Celery

      The low-calorie, crunchy vegetable is great as an afternoon raw snack or chopped up and added to a soup or salad. It has antioxidants and enzymes that benefit your skin and digestive tract, and the high-water content helps keep you hydrated and satiated.

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      Cucumber

      Whether you like them chopped into spears, rounds or little nuggets, cucumbers are bursting with B vitamins, which can help ease feelings of anxiety and stress. No wonder why you find cucumber water in spas! They are also incredibly hydrating. Eat the peel to get added fiber.

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      Leeks

      In the allium family with onions and garlic, these can be similarly good for your heart and also have sulfur-containing compounds that fight free radicals. Leeks have a milder flavor and should be cooked before eating.

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      Green Beans

      A noteworthy source of plant protein, green beans deliver a couple of grams in a little over a cup. They also contain carotenoids that can help maintain healthy eyes as well as improve your skin’s ability to fight the effects of aging. These are one of the most versatile veggies on the list, so whatever you’re eating, chances are green beans will fit right in.

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      Hot Peppers

      Whether you like jalapenos, serranos or another hot pepper, the capsaicin responsible for the heat is both an anti-inflammatory and an appetite suppressant3. So, add a little zing to your dish, and you may find you have leftovers for tomorrow.

       

      Sources:

      3 http://healthland.time.com/2011/04/26/diet-food-red-hot-chili-peppers-may-help-curb-appetite/ 

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      Spinach

      This powerhouse veggie has a high iron content (good for your blood and muscles) as well as folate, which helps ensure a healthy pregnancy and decreases the risk of birth defects,4 but also helps fight depression and keep your heart healthy5. The baby leaves (perfect for salad greens!) don’t need much heat to wilt, so use them as a bed for a hot dish or simply put the leaves on top for some extra nutrients. The heartier the leaf, the better for cooking.

       

      Sources:

      4 https://www.cdc.gov/features/folicacidbenefits/index.html

      5 https://www.webmd.com/heart-disease/news/20021122/folic-acid-for-your-heart 

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      Zucchini

      Zoodles (making noodles out of this veggie) are the latest craze with this versatile garden favorite. Talk about nutrient-rich pasta—and few calories! High potassium, a cousin of sodium, is one of the many plusses of zucchini since you need both electrolytes to regulate your body’s fluids.

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      Did You Know?

      Did you know you can add any of these veggies to your meals with Jenny Craig? Book your free appointment and see how a balanced nutrition plan can help you lose weight!

       

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    • {block="greenfoods"|raw} Shelby W05 Regular



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